We’ll Go On “Senseless Strikes” If… - GMA

The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) has taken a swipe at the Minister of Health, Alban Bagbin, for his comments which sought to discredit the legitimacy of strikes by public sector health professionals. The Health Minister, Hon. Bagbin, in an address to health workers over the weekend indicated that government will no longer tolerate unjustified strikes. According to the Minister, health workers seeking to embark on such industrial actions should either resign from the profession and re-apply or be ready to go through the appropriate channels to have their grievances addressed. The President of the GMA, Dr. Adusei Poku told Citi News, the Minister’s comments are misplaced. He said: “We are not out of our minds to go on strike needlessly. If they don’t do the right thing, we will continue to go on strike because that is the only answer.” “We have been writing to them for so many months but they don’t even respond to these letters so when the need arises, we will go on strike. So long as they don’t do what is sensible, we will also go on a senseless strike,” he threatened. Meanwhile, striking consultants at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) in Kumasi are asking for a change in the allowance payment system to ensure swift payment of their money. The consultants withdrew their services last week over nine months unpaid allowances owed them by the Health Ministry. The doctors have insisted that they will only return to work when the allowances are paid. The spokesperson for Academic Consultants, Dr. Frank Ankobiah told Citi News, “we want what is owed us to be paid. We are not saying our services are indispensable, all what we are saying is that just pay us what you owe us and we will go back to work. Besides that, we want to sit down and put structures in place where we can be paid every month after we have rendered the service.” He added that the group will be meeting this week over the comments made by the Health Minister, Alban Bagbin, who described their allowances as ‘blood money.’